Stab Magazine | Day 1 Of The World's Best Grom Contest: Young Guns
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Day 1 Of The World’s Best Grom Contest: Young Guns

Currently unveiling the biggest gun.

news // Aug 5, 2016
Words by Action: Bosko
Reading Time: 2 minutes

It’s a strange scene.

Tanks roll by a few hundred feet away, kicking up clouds of dust from California’s overcooked soil. The sound of bombs being tested in the less-than-distant hills shakes through the air. Soldiers march down the beach, with more soldiers limply draped around their necks. Enter: Not the smell of napalm, but nine of the world’s best 18-and-under surfers.

The Quiksilver Young Guns grand finale hasn’t started yet, but things are already pretty interesting.

After two rounds of an Instagram-fuelled voting contest, a field of infinity was shrunken down to 9. An odd number, but evenly arrived at via the three disciplines that make surfing great: Airs. Rail turns. Combos.

And now, Marco Mignot, Rio Waida, Kyuss King, Barron Mamiya, Kael Walsh, Cody Young, Malakai Martinez, Sandy Whittaker and Sammy Pupo are standing on the beach at a wave called DMJ’s — a fun little wedge on the Camp Pendleton Marine Base just outside of Oceanside, California.

 

QS16 YoungGunsFinal Heywood 4699

Photography

Ryan Heywood

Today, in all its glory, was just for freesurfing. But tomorrow’s a different story.

Every Young Gun will surf two thirty-minute heats. In those heats, they’ll be trying to get busy with each of the three categories — airs, rail turns and combos. So, say Sammy sticks a full rotation on one wave and does four turns on another. Maybe he’ll get a 9 for the air and a 7 for the combo. Then, instead of trying any more airs, he’ll know that he needs to lay into a good rail turn in order to bump his total score up.

The top four will become the final four, and they’ll do it all over again in another round of 30-minute heats the next day. A champion will be born. And he’ll be born with $10K in the bank.

There will be no priority. No jerseys. No jockeying. Just raw surfing. And the judges? Zeke Lau for the rail. Mikey Wright for the airs. And Jeremy Flores for the combos. They’re three of the world’s finest in each discipline — a bit different from a dated criteria and a few fellas in a booth.

Jeremy, Zeke and Mikey will also be rewarding the kids with cash sporadically throughout the day. (Coffin rides are typically a crowd-pleaser.) It’ll be wild, weird, fun and competitive. But mostly, it’ll be surfing.

Check back here and follow @quiksilver for daily updates.

QS16 YoungGunsFinal Heywood 4702

Photography

Ryan Heywood

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